Self Portrait

I have sketched many self portraits but this is the first painting of me. It is a partner to the one of my friend Nikki that i painted earlier this year. Artists often paint themselves as they are always ready models. Often you can find the artist blending in the background of many old master paintings. I hope to do more… maybe a birthday painting a year.

Deer Amber

Early in the spring of 2021 we went for a hike in the forest with a young friend who recently moved to Manitoulin. Such a delightful spirit she has, ready to leap and dash through the woods in her moccasins but she wore boots as it was a little wet. She sent me a photo of moccasins that she had made. The terrain here is quite rocky and Amber, being in her prime of life, was so agile in her movement along the trail that i imagined that she was a deer. Later I covered a board with leaves and drew a picture of Amber as a deer and set the scene aside. In July i picked up the sketch and finished it.


It has been a rough year for all the people living in Long Term Care homes during C-19. On Manitoulin there have been many workarounds for visiting initially with zoom visits and then gradually making room for in person visits with caregivers having weekly Covid tests, screening, temperature monitoring, donning masks and lots of hand washing. This is a painting of a dear Baha’i friend who is in the Manitoulin Lodge in Gore Bay. Alba is an extremely patient and prayerful woman.


This was my last painting in the July portrait a day series. Hugh is a dear Baha’i friend who visited Manitoulin for the month of September 2019. He offered service to the community including counselling and massage and several workshops on his discipline of the “Korason Method for Authentic Voice and Dialogue”, you can learn more about that here Hugh Smiley . On one special occasion Hugh honoured us with a piano performance at a Music & Poetry evening in Little Current.


It always takes a few paintings in a series to get warmed up and I regret that this was the first painting in my July 2020 portrait series. Sophie is my mentor and visual arts coach who, like Valerie, is endowed with keen and penetrating eyes. Sophie Anne Edwards is a geographer, poet, visual artist… her expression in the world intermingles these disciplines in the form of geopoetics… you will learn more in this mini interview .